Update rejection questions

Hey everyone,

I recently tried to make a maintenance update (fixed reported bugs, checked compatibility with WooCommerce) for one of my themes https://themeforest.net/item/makery-marketplace-wordpress-theme/9609178 and got a rejection, the reviewer listed all the requirements like for a new item submission. I built this theme in 2014 and rebuilding it to match the new requirements would mean rebuilding it from scratch. I just wanted to fix a few bugs for existing buyers.

I don’t know if the Envato staff or reviewers read the forums, but it’s really confusing:

  • If you don’t allow me to fix bugs for the buyers, what should I tell them? Something like “Sorry, I fixed the bugs you reported, but ThemeForest doesn’t allow me to deliver the update”? This sounds absurd.

  • Why do you allow selling an item, but don’t allow to improve it, even if there are minor fixes? If the author submits an update, then some things were clearly broken and the update fixes them. By doing this you knowingly sell a broken item, even though an author wants to fix it.

  • What should I do with the theme now? It has 1700+ sales and still gets a few sales per week, and customers are satisfied with the item, I still support it. If you don’t allow me to maintain it, should I delete it?


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Yes, it doesn’t make any sense. They either shouldn’t force it to old items, or stop selling items which are not up to current standards (if it was up to me, I would choose latter option).

My advice would be to just rebuild it from the scratch. I did the same with almost all my themes in last two years. Take it as an opportunity to bring new life to your items and prolong their lifespan. If you also mange to get a WP badge for your profile, it will boost your items in search.

Envato rules aside, do YOU want to sell an outdated item? If you built it in 2014, you know that no amount of small fixes will bring it to 2020 standards. My oldest item is from 2014 as well and I know how poor the code was before I did a complete rework. In the current climate, making such a big update for an existing item with reputation may even be much more lucrative than creating a brand new theme, so you should at least consider it.

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You can make new item psd or html for convert wp, regards.

Thanks for your reply, I’d rebuild them from scratch but I have another full-time project, and I don’t plan to do it anytime soon (rebuilding all of my themes would take at least 6 months). Also, I lowered the price compared to modern themes so it’s a nice cheap option for buyers who still use the Classic Editor and don’t mind using shortcodes. I also clicked through all options and features and they still work.

I understand that Envato wants to force authors to rebuild old themes this way, but if author refuses to do so there should be some “maintenance” mode for an item, e.g. it’s hidden in search, but author can deliver updates that are not checked for new requirements, just to support existing buyers. At the moment there’s only one option, deleting an item.

By blocking these updates Envato just harms all existing buyers, they paid for ongoing security and compatibility updates and I can’t deliver them, I just can’t believe this is the official policy.

You are right of course. I do not think they are handling it properly. You can try to explain it in the message for reviewer when you update, maybe you will talk some sense to review.

But if won’t work, then rework is you only option I guess. You know the saying, play the cards you’re dealt. And again, this can end in your favour after all. If those items are still selling. they will probably sell even more after the update. It is IMHO one of those things you really do not want to do, but once you do it, you will be glad you did. It was for me at least.

Thanks, tried to re-submit the update with explanations but got the same list of requirements:) So I guess there’s a policy “rebuild or delete” because now I’m locked out of my own product and can’t fix it for my customers. And if I delete it then it will disappear from the downloads list for 1700+ buyers. Anyways, thanks for your input, will try to contact the Envato support.

Definitely do not delete it. You can contact the support so they can soft disable it if you want. It will wait there for you when you decide to make an update in the future.